Published: April 4, 2017
With the increased use of technology out in the field, the military has put an emphasis on rugged LCD displays. While on missions in harsh environments, military LCDs need to be built to withstand much more rigorous situations than your average desktop monitor. The factors considered when purchasing a display for the average user is readability, size, and price. For those of whom who need to read an LCD screen on a ship in the middle of the ocean in 100-degree weather, the needs for an LCD display dramatically changes.
Readability in the Sun
One of the most common requests in building a rugged LCD screen is sunlight (daylight) readability. Most of us have had some difficulty while reading our smartphone on a bright day, but adding some shade with a free hand is a serviceable solution. However, if you’re on a critical mission with lives on the line, this may not be an option. In order to ensure readability at all times in the day, an LCD should be tested under all lighting conditions. Direct sunlight, reflections, and artificial lighting can affect a display so much so that it becomes unreadable. Dusk and darkness can be a difficult time to view LCD screens as well so dimming capabilities need to be installed. Since these needs vary so much through the day and into the night, personnel need an easy-to-use on-screen display (OSD) to quickly adjust settings to their needs.
Rugged and Strong Build
During most missions that involve the Army, Air Force, Navy or other branches of the military, screens are not treated with a whole lot of care. The environment they’re in guarantees that they’ll be unstable, constantly adjusted, and moved from site to site. Because of this, all screens should meet required military standards and be prepared to take a beating.
Size and Weight
The military can have a variety of different needs for an LCD during a single mission. This means it needs to be adaptable to as many situations as necessary. Size and weight play a major role as screens may need to be moved to different areas or placed on unorthodox surfaces. Users need to be able to move displays around easily and quickly. A bulky, heavy display will slow down missions and could result in a critical loss in time.
Resistance to High/Low Temperatures
Whether it’s the desert or the mountains, a screen cannot fail due to temperature. To ensure that this doesn’t happen, LCD displays need to meet military standards and be able to operate at temperatures ranging from at least 5°F to 130°F (-15°C to +55°C). Storage temperature is just as important because displays need to be ready to be deployed at all times. Storage temperature of rugged LCD displays should be able to withstand temperatures ranging from -67°F to 185°F (-55°C to +85°C).